Retail sales assistant CV example
To land a great sales assistant job, you need a strong CV.
There are lots of other people competing for retail sales assistant roles, so your CV needs to stand out from the crowd, and ensure you get selected for interview.
This post provides you with everything you need to create a successful sales assistant CV.
- Sales assistant CV example
- CV writing guide for sales assistants
- Sales assistant CV template
- Where to send your CV
Let’s start by taking a look at a good example of a sales assistant CV.
Sales assistant CV example
The following guide will show you exactly how you can write your very own interview-winning sales assistant CV, just like this example.
Structuring your sales assistant CV
This infographic gives a high-level overview of how your CV should be laid out and formatted.
- Contact details should be placed at the top of your CV so that employers can easily reach you and call you in for interviews.
- A profile, or personal statement at the top of your CV provides a quick sales pitch of your skills to reel readers in
- Bullet pointed core skills give employers a nice snapshot of your abilities
- Work experience (or school/college projects for inexperienced people) should be listed in short sharp bullet points for easy reading
- Education should be included at the bottom of your CV to detail your qualifications
2 pages in length is about perfect for your CV– any longer and it will become a bit of a long and boring read for employers.
Keep your CV nice and simple with a clean crisp font and plenty of bullet points – don’t try to over complicate it with crazy designs or wild colours.
Make your contact details visible
The purpose of your CV is to encourage employers to contact you – so make it easy for them.
To ensure that employers can contact you with ease, you must place your contact details at the top of your CV and make them clearly visible.
Don’t hide them at the bottom were nobody can see them.
- Your mobile telephone number
- Your email address
- Your general location (e.g. London/Birmingham/Croydon)
- Your date of birth
- Your full address
(Employers don’t need to know your DOB and address just yet – your CV is purely designed for selling your skills and winning interviews – so don’t waste space with unnecessary details)
Sell yourself with a punchy profile
Think of your profile as a sales pitch. A short paragraph that introduces you, and tells readers exactly why they should hire you for a sales assistant position.
Your profile should include things like:
Relevant skills and knowledge for sales assistants e.g.
- Customer service
- People skills
- Complaint handling
- Working with retail brands or high street supermarkets
- Experience of till work, shop floor walking or stock taking
- Types of customers you have worked with
- Types of items you’ve sold – food, clothing electronics
How you can benefit an employer e.g.
- Improve their customers’ experience
- Increase sales
- Keep stores running efficiently
Try to avoid generic clichés in your profile, such as “works well in a team or individually” or “always goes the extra mile”. These things are quite generic and apply to most jobs – you should be sticking to specific retail sales assistant content in your CV.
Highlight your “core skills”
Underneath your profile, it’s a good idea to create a core skills list.
This is a short bullet pointed section which lists all of your most important skills for sales assistant roles.
This list creates a snapshot of your skills, so that employers can get a very good idea of your skill set from just a quick glance at your CV.
It’s a great way to ensure you get noticed instantly.
If you have experience – detail it (if not skip this section)
If you have some previous work experience, the next thing to do is list your previous roles.
Work in reverse chronological order (starting with the most recent job and working down to the oldest)
When writing your role descriptions, you need to show the following:
Who you work for
The company you work/worked for and which locations(s) you worked in. You also need to detail the people you work with including colleagues, managers, and customers.
When you worked there
Always put your start and finish dates at the top of every role and round off to month level. E.g. January 2016 – December 2017.
For sales assistants in retail, it can also be important to state whether you work weekends and evenings in your roles, as most retail stores will require staff who can work flexible hours.
What you do there
Provide a bullet pointed list of responsibilities to show employers all of the tasks and duties you have performed in previous roles. This could range from advising customers on purchases and replenishing stock, to balancing tills and organising displays.
Why you were hired
It’s good to list your responsibilities, but if you want your CV to get noticed, you need to explain why your actions were so important to your previous workplaces.
Try to show how your input has benefited the stores you have worked for and it’s customers, by demonstrating some impressive results.
For example - Instead of just writing,
“Dealing with complaints”
You should expand to say,
“Resolving customer complaints to reduce the amount of refunds being made and retain customers who were thinking of leaving”
By expanding to show the impact of your actions, you demonstrate how valuable you could be to a future potential employer.
You might not be able to do this for every one of your responsibilities, but try to do it where possible – it will make a huge impression on employers.
The example CV section below shows you how to structure your role descriptions.
Start with an outline to give an introduction and overview to your employer and your role.
List your responsibilities with short sharp bullet points (this makes them easy to read)
Round off the role with some big achievements if you have any. For example, you may have produced a record amount of sales in your first month.
If you have no experience – compensate for it
Not everybody has work experience, and that’s fine. We all have to start somewhere
But just because you have no experience, doesn’t mean that you can’t create an impressive CV and land a job you love.
If you lack work experience, there are plenty of other ways to prove you have the skills to become a successful.
School / College / University work /Placements
Throughout your education you have probably completed numerous projects, courses, exams and team exercises.
Extract relevant sales assistant skills from these experiences and highlight them throughout your CV.
For example, school coursework requires planning, organisation, written communication, and many more skills that you could showcase in your CV.
Interests and hobbies
Your outside-of-work interests and hobbies can involve plenty of sought-after skills that you can mention in your CV.
For example, you might captain a sports team with demonstrates leadership skills – or you might write a blog which could prove your written communication and motivation.
What do sales assistant employers look for in a CV?
The best way to create an effective sales assistant CV, is to tailor it specifically to match the needs of retailers.
So, what are top qualities that employers look for in a sales assistant CV?
Customer service – In a customer facing role you need to have strong abilities in serving customers and giving them a great shopping experience.
Complaint handling – Not every customer will be happy, and a good sales assistant will be able to resolve complaints and create positive solutions.
Cash management – Handling orders and transactions on tills and managing cash is a vital part of the sales assistant role.
Stock management – Retailers rely on good staff to manage their stock levels and keep customer facing displays replenished.
Communication – Working in a busy retail store requires you to communicate effectively with colleagues and customers in a variety of formats.
Sales – It goes without saying that sales are a big part of a retail sales assistant’s role, helping customers to make the right choices and making income for the business.
Product knowledge – If you work exclusively within a particular industry, then you may have some specialist knowledge such as electronics or fashion.
Visual merchandising – The ability to create attractive displays that drive sales is crucial in the retail space.
Literacy and numeracy – In a role that involves dealing with many people throughout the day and handling the sales of goods, it pays to be highly literate and numerate.
Detail your education
At the bottom of your CV, include a list of your education history and qualifications
Any relevant sales or retail vocational qualifications you have, should be highlighted first.
Otherwise you simply need to list whatever formal qualifications you have, such as Degree, A-levels and GCSE’s with the grades and dates you achieved them.
If any of your qualifications are really important to the companies you will be applying to – it’s worth repeating them at the top of your CV (in the profile) so that they don’t get missed.
Being underpaid? Due a pay rise?
Find out with Adzuna's free ValueMyCV tool
Adzuna's CV checker scans your CV, and tells you how much you should be earning, highlights any CV mistakes and shows you the best jobs in your field.
Sending your sales assistant CV
Once you’ve created a strong sales assistant CV, you need to get it in front of the right employers.
Below are a handful of websites where you can find exciting retail opportunities.
Total Jobs is another huge UK job website with a big variety of sales assistant jobs advertised.
Retail Choice is a specialist retail job website with thousands of retail store roles available that you might not find on some of the bigger job sites.
In Retail is another niche retail job board with a high percentage of sales assistant opportunities.
UK Temps only run adverts for temporary and casual positions. Ideal if you want a seasonal job or something to fit around studies.
Now that you have a great CV and plenty of jobs to apply for, you should be well on your way to landing a great role.
If you create a CV that is nice and easy for employers to read, whilst at the same time, highlighting all of your most valuable retail sales skills and knowledge – you should certainly be able to land plenty of interviews.
Good luck with the job search!